A new study has “ruled out” the risk of COVID-19 infection in music venues, providing masks and adequate ventilation are used.
It’s the second time research of this kind has been undertaken in Germany. Similar findings were unveiled by Halle University last year, raising hopes that live music could make a significant comeback in 2021.
This latest work was carried out by the Fraunhofer Heinrich Hertz Institute with support from Germany’s Federal Environment Agency, and used a high-tech dummy to simulate human breathing inside Dortmund’s 1,500-seat Konzerthaus. The movement of resulting airborne particles was analysed, with measurements taken on three separate dates.
“Concert halls and theatres are not places of infection,” Dr Raphael von Hoensbroech, director of Konzerthaus Dortmund, told IQ Magazine after the results were published. “The past few months have shown that politics needs a scientifically sound basis for decision-making. With our study, we want to ensure that concert halls and theatres may again admit sufficient audiences when they reopen.”
Scientists believe the results can be applied to other venues of a similar size and design. The news comes in the same week as America’s leading authority on infectious diseases told an online conference concert venues could reopen by autumn, and the UK Government launched a new inquiry into the impact of COVID-19 on nightlife.